Great. Another LA-car-race-shooting drama.
The LA County Sheriff Department shoots up a Compton neighborhood to get a guy—Winston Hayes--who isn’t exactly public enemy number one, but is stupid (or drugged up) enough to keep driving when the long, if inaccurate, arm of the law has him cornered. I don’t blame the officers for shooting at him. For heaven’s sake, Hayes was driving up on the sidewalks and into other cars including the police cars! Being in front of an SUV driven by a crazy man will make a person as dead as a bullet will.
The deputies, however, were no less of a hazard to the health of the neighborhood. They fired 120 rounds at the guy, but he barely gets scratched. Plenty of collateral targets, like houses and windows belonging to same are hit, however. One of the deputies even stops one of his buddy's bullets with his vest; 'friendly fire.' (The phrase sounds so benign, doesn’t it?) And no gun was found on the suspect.
So, now the community is in an uproar--and justifiably so. On the front page of yesterday’s internet Los Angeles Times there was a photo of Compton councilman Isadore Hall, a young, squared-away looking man; his mouth is open and he is gesturing in outrage and I’m there with him…I used to live not far from the area in question. Couldn't they have trapped the guy near one of the numerous freeway underpasses or the like? One wonders whether a crazy driver would have had 120 rounds fired at him in a less black and Hispanic residential neighborhood in, say, Santa Monica. (And, believe me, there are plenty of nuts in that fair city driving SUVs.)
But while no one died or was seriously hurt from this latest LA drama, another drama ended with the funeral of a brutally murdered man this past Saturday—like Winston Hayes, a black man. But, this man, Tommy Edward Scott, won’t have the likes of Councilman Hall holding press conferences on his behalf; no marches will be held to protest the unjustifiable and gruesome nature of his death. See if you can guess the reason.
Officer Tommy Edward Scott became the first Los Angeles airport policeman to die in the line of duty in the department's 59-year history when he tried Friday to stop a pedestrian from commandeering his patrol car near LAX.I found out about the latter incident from Cobb who contrasts reactions to the Scott murder with that of the Stanley Miller beating.
Scott, a 3-year veteran of the Los Angeles World Airports Police Department, was trying to regain control of his car by hanging onto the driver's side door when the vehicle crashed into a fire hydrant, Deputy LAPD Police Chief Michel Moore said.
"As the suspect drove away at a very high rate of speed, the officer attempted to disable the vehicle," Moore said. "The suspect hit the hydrant, and that led to the horrific crash."
My brother Doc was furious at the Fungibles and the 'black community' because of this relative silence. I suffered through his tirade against LA Urban League Mogul John Mack whose opinion on the matter was probably not sought by local media, but he sure did make enough noise about the flashlight upside Stanley Miller's head. No charges were brought against the arresting officers in the Miller case because of a lack of evidence. If that sounds too technical, understand this: Miller didn't bleed. He took an aspirin. The LAPD officer's blood was all over the car door, and the sidewalk, and the windshield. [SNIP]And mine.
I wonder what would happen if for once in the entire history of Los Angeles, somebody would think something of this nature would merit a big turnout from the people who live where I grew up. It's not a revolutionary idea, but it's a good one.
My condolences to the Scott family.
Meanwhile, I sit in the back of the house.